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Mad Antics

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    The Mad Ants will hold an open tryout from 2 to 6 p.m. Sept. 14 at the Quest Multisport Complex in Chicago.
  • Howard not sure on return to Mad Ants this season
    Howard has had some interest from NBA teams – that's nothing new, though Howard has never made a regular-season roster – and is again fielding offers from teams in Europe.
  • Ants will look different
    When the Mad Ants open defense of their D-League championship this season, the roster will likely look very different.

Ants make it four in a row

The Mad Ants just beat down the best team in the NBA D-League twice.

The first time came Thursday, by 16 points. Then Saturday night at Memorial Coliseum, they blistered Santa Cruz 118-90.

Those two wins hiked the Ants' record to 7-10 and gave them four wins a row, which ties the franchise high for a winning streak.

With a combination of defense at the rim and the ability to get out and finish a fast break, this might be the most entertaining team the Ants have had in its five-plus years.

The team was 48 of 91 from the floor for a 52.7 percentage and held Santa Cruz to 35 of 39 for a 39.3 percentage. There is ball movement, even without point guard Walker Russell Jr., who was traded to Reno. And there is energy off the bench, indicated by the 45 points scored from the five reserves, led by Sadiel Rojas' 20 points.

What's unsettling, in a way, is now the team has to go on a seven-game road trip, beginning next Saturday at Erie, Pa. How it survives that trip will indicate how the rest of the season will go.

For the moment, though, this is an awfully good team, probably the best the franchise has had.